3D printing craft

3D printed exhibits enlivened the last edition of Long Night of Museums in Poland

A museum is not always a place, where we can see boring exhibits behind dusty panes. Organisers (the co-workers of the Museum of the First Piasts at Lednica) of an exhibition called: “From the Depths of the Waters: Fishing Ostrów Lednicki in the Early Middle Ages” are aware of that and during the last edition of Long Night of Museums (May 21st) they used 3D printing technology to enliven the event. What problems did they face?

The aim of the enterprise was to emphasise of the meaning of water environment for life of medieval inhabitants of Ostrów Lednicki. For years, archaeologists have been studying the island and its surrounding waters to learn more about these early fisherman, and have accumulated evidence in the form of tools and fish bones that point to a fishing-heavy society whose technology hasn’t actually changed all that much across the centuries. An ichthyological analysis found several different species, including: western sturgeon, bream, chub, ide, asp, roach, tench, catfish, pike, perch, and pike-perch. Their 3D printed models were presented on the exhibition.

The most problematic was the size of fish. The biggest animal was 2.10 m long and it was divided into 15 elements.  The division was related to the fact that during the subsequent bonding models, not all edges perfectly came down and we had to wipe the fish with the sandpaper and than putty. The models required also post-processing.

wystawa ryb

In an exhaustive project that required approximately 240 hours of printing, the team created the fish with a combination of several printers, including an HBOT, an Ultimaker 2, a MakerBot Replicator 2X, and a Flashforge Dreamer. The fish were printed with PLA from Polish filament manufacturer Devil Design. The preparations were managed by Trójwymiarowi.pl.

The post-processing consisted on: removing of supports, matching the elements and polishing them. The next stem was smoothing them out. Finally, Mrs. Honorata Winceniak of Artmur painted all of 9 exhibits in gorgeous, realistic detail, gifting the museum with models that look as though they could have been pulled directly from the waters around Ostrów Lednicki.

It wasn’t the first experience of the co-workers of the he Museum of the First Piasts at Lednica with 3D printing. Recently, they took part in creating a 3D printed model of baptistery in Ostrów Lednicki on the occasion of the 1050th anniversary of the of Baptism of Poland. The exhibition Wystawa “From the Depths of the Waters: Fishing Ostrów Lednicki in the Early Middle Ages” varied the last edition of Long Night of Museums. The models surprised visitors with their high quality and sizes and participants of the project had a lot of fun developing it.

Paulina Winczewska
German philologist and translator, fanatic of the strangest and the most difficult foreign languages and culinary experiments, who is not afraid of new technologies and gadgets. Enthusiast of swimming.

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